WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) have announced new Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines. The guidelines, developed with feedback from industry experts, are designed to enhance and streamline commercial building workforce training and certification programs.

“As building technologies become more advanced, professionals need better training and certification options to increase the quality and scalability of our nation’s energy workforce,” said Kathleen Hogan, deputy assistant secretary for energy efficiency. “Employers, building owners, and program administrators can also use these established guidelines to identify qualified workers who are trained to deliver energy savings.”

The guidelines provide a national framework for certification agencies across the country to roll out quality, consistent programs. Up until now there have been no national guidelines for energy efficiency-related professional credentials.

DOE and NIBS worked with industry trade associations, governing credential boards, and energy efficiency advocates to develop the professional certification and certificate program guidelines for four key energy-related jobs: energy manager, building energy auditor, building operations professional, and building commissioning professional.

“The Institute established the Commercial Workforce Credentialing Council (CWCC) to help lead development and implementation of the Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines,” said Henry L. Green, Hon. AIA, president of NIBS. “The CWCC consists of private and public sector industry stakeholders, so we were able to have everyone involved provide input into the process. This is particularly important when the goal is training the next generation of skilled clean-energy workers, who will be responsible for leading the charge in optimizing commercial building performance.”

DOE will recognize competency-based certification programs that successfully implement the new guidelines and achieve third-party accreditation. Currently, DOE and NIBS are working with industry stakeholders to strengthen outreach, education, and adoption of the guidelines. For more information, click here.

Publication date: 3/23/2015

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